Google’s Approach to Email

by Jim Hayes on May 15, 2011

While cleaning up my inbox tonight I found my very first email from Google’s gmail team way back on 9/10/2004.  One of my co-workers at Raytheon told me about this new email service from Google and said he would send me an invite if I wanted one.  At the time I had both a stellar AOL email address as well as one from college and liked the idea of an address not tied to an internet provider or school.

I had no idea how much I would love Gmail or how that small decision would impact my adoption of technology later down the road.  Read the original email from the Google Team below (pretty interesting to see how far it has come).

When did you first sign up for gmail?

—————–Email from Google——————————–

from Gmail Team
to Jim Hayes <>
date Fri, Sep 10, 2004 at 2:08 PM
subject Gmail is different. Here’s what you need to know.

First off, welcome. And thanks for agreeing to help us test Gmail. By now you probably know the key ways in which Gmail differs from traditional webmail services. Searching instead of filing. A free gigabyte of storage. Messages displayed in context as conversations.

So what else is new?

Gmail has many other special features that will become apparent as you use your account. To help you get started, we encourage you to visit our Help Center, there you can browse frequently asked questions, read our Getting Started guide, or contact the Gmail User Support Team. You’ll also find information in the Help Center on such topics as:

  • Importing your contacts from Yahoo! Mail, Outlook, and others to Gmail
  • Using address auto-complete
  • Setting up filters for incoming mail
  • Using advanced search options

You may also have noticed some text ads or related links to the right of this message. They’re placed there in the same way that ads are placed alongside Google search results and, through our AdSense program, on content pages across the web. The matching of ads to content in your Gmail messages is performed entirely by computers; never by people. Because the ads and links are matched to information that is of interest to you, we hope you’ll find them relevant and useful.

We’re working hard during our limited test to improve Gmail and make it the best webmail service around. Thanks for taking the plunge with us. We hope you’ll enjoy Google’s approach to email.

The Gmail Team

P.S. You can sign in to your account any time by visiting



Being Offended is a Choice

by Jim Hayes on March 27, 2011

Yes, being offended is a choice.  This isn’t a popular view in a world where any rude, inconsiderate, or uneducated comment can throw the the media/twiterverse/facebook into a tailspin.  No matter what someone says to you, you and only you make the choice to be offended (maybe this statement is offensive to you… if so keep reading).

Do people stay stupid things?  I do and there is a chance you may have at some point as well.  The question is why am I offended when someone says something dumb?  It seems like there are a few reasons why we become offended including:

1) You think you are right. I wrote a blog post, Why I’m Never Wrong, because I love to be right.  When you love being right someone saying your wrong is a sure fire way to feel offended.

2) You are personally connected to what’s being attacked/mocked. If you have a family member serving our country, negative comments about soldiers are going to cause you to bristle and feel offended.  Same with jokes about the earthquake in Japan.

3) You are afraid that what was said might be true. This is the sneakiest of the three as you might not even be aware of what is going on.  If a spouse or co-worker attacks you in an area know you are weak in you will feel offended.

Even if you insult my brother serving our country overseas or think I am the worst boss in the world (and tell everyone in the office) I am 100% in control of if it offends me.   Offended people are usually not happy people and I don’t want to live stuck (by my own choice) in the land of offendedness.

If you have 18 minutes, watch this video by Michael Hyatt that talks about overlooking offenses and learning from criticism.  He approaches the topic from a Christian perspective but I think anyone can learn from the ideas he presents.

What else causes you to feel offended?


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Back to Blogging

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Apture WordPress Plugin

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What I’ve Learned from Hippies

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Starbucks Joins iPhone World with New App

September 23, 2009

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Firefox Plugins I love: IE Tabs & Xmarks

September 19, 2009

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Why We Still Live in a Condo

September 11, 2009

Tweet All of the media coverage the past month about the $8k tax benefit to buying a home now combined with a great blog post by Alexander Kjerulf, author of the Chief Happiness Officer blog, reminded me of an interesting lesson I’ve learned; there is great freedom in having a small mortgage/rent payment. Amber and […]

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